The UK Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has opened an investigation into whether PwC UK was acting independently when it audited UK house builder Berkeley Group Holdings for the year ended 30 April 2012.

The FRC said in a statement it launched its investigation as a result of a former PwC partner, Glyn Barker, joining the board of Berkeley Group Holdings.

Barker was appointed non executive director of Berkeley in January 2012, after a 35 years career at PwC, serving most recently as PwC UK vice chairman.

Berkeley Group Holdings declined to comment.

PwC UK said in a statement: "We can confirm that we have received a letter from the FRC informing us that they are commencing an investigation. We will continue to fully cooperate with the FRC’s enquiries. We take our independence responsibilities very seriously."

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UK Financial Reporting Council